Cookies on this website
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Continue' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

In adult rats, 50,000 units of recombinant interleukin-1 beta (IL-1 beta) injected into the brain parenchyma produced an intense meningitis and disruption of the blood-CSF barrier by 4 h. No increase in vascular permeability to horseradish peroxidase or leukocyte recruitment was observed at the site of injection. By contrast, in juvenile rats, 100 units of IL-1 beta injected into the striatum gave rise to a large increase in blood-brain barrier permeability and recruitment of polymorphonuclear neutrophils into the tissue around the injection site by 4 h. This effect was also accompanied by a marked meningitis. The injection of 100 units of IL-1 beta into neonatal (2-h-old) rats gave rise to an increase in permeability of vessels to serum proteins in the meninges, but no increase in vascular permeability was observed at the injection site. The IL-1 beta-induced increases in vessel permeability in the meninges, parenchyma, and choroid plexus were polymorphonuclear neutrophil dependent, since leukocyte depletion by irradiation or polymorphonuclear neutrophil anti-serum pre-treatment eliminated the response in the juvenile animals and in the adults. Seventy-five thousand units of murine tumour necrosis factor-alpha injected into the parenchyma of both adults and juvenile animals failed to induce an increase in blood-brain barrier permeability or polymorphonuclear neutrophil recruitment, but did give rise to a mild meningitis. These findings demonstrate clear differences in the responsiveness of different CNS compartments to IL-1 beta. Furthermore, while tumour necrosis factor-alpha and IL-1 beta might have been expected to exhibit similar proinflammatory effects in the CNS, this is not the case. We also show, for the first time, that age has a significant effect on the response to a cytokine. The "window of susceptibility' to an inflammatory stimulus in juvenile rats, if paralleled in humans, may be a major factor in the increased susceptibility of children to trauma or to infectious insults to the CNS.

Type

Journal article

Journal

Brain

Publication Date

03/1997

Volume

120 ( Pt 3)

Pages

435 - 444

Keywords

Animals, Blood-Brain Barrier, Capillary Permeability, Interleukin-1, Meninges, Mice, Neutrophil Activation, Neutrophils, Rats, Recombinant Proteins, Time Factors, Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha